Flying back from my coverage as part of the medical team in the first 2 rounds of March Madness with the Maryland Terps Men’s Basketball team gave me a chance to really look back on what made it all possible. Family; a more than wonderful / understanding wife Marie McKenzie Sokoloff and very busy kids that truly understand my passion for involvement in sports medicine. I miss every minute when I am away and cherish the time we have upon return. And “no”! You cannot travel with your family. (Sorry, many people asked me that today). And my work family at the Yalich Clinic https://www.facebook.com/
I have been fortunate enough to stand on the sidelines of 2 super bowl wins along with other major sports medicine accomplishments. But the experiences I had the last few days and achievements I have seen from this team have me very excited about the next level. This Wednesday we are on to the Sweet 16 in the college basketball playoffs to play the “number one” team in the country, Kansas. Until you are there game by game, and shot by shot, along with watching other games on tv, you do not realize how the roll or bounce of a ball one way or another can change the destiny for so many people. From the kids that could be playing their last college basketball game to all the support staff and coaches around them, working for years just to even make the tournament.
Now the University of Maryland is one of the top 16 basketball teams in the country heading to Louisville, KY to continue the goal of being the National Champion. Along with the team comes all those support staff that do so many things to make events like this happen, everyone doing their part. That is me. Just a part; but like everyone else on this plane, a valuable part. Just like my partner in working Maryland Basketball, Dr. Larry Plotkin, we are proud to be that essential part; not just in the playoffs but throughout the year. Under the direction of Matt Charvat, working with Dr. James Baronas, we are a part.
Landing soon and time to catch up with everyone and everything that has gone on since we left last week. Time to unpack, do laundry, pack and plan to be away again with one goal. Win.
Well, as you now know, the story ended in Louisville with a loss to the number one team in the tournament, Kansas. It was a great ride and one heck of a year. Now all the questions start. Who is coming back? What will the team look like next year? That part sounds a lot like life in the NFL. People ask all the time, ”who are we going to draft? / what will the team look like next season?” The answer is easy for me, “I do not know… but what I do know is I will be there… and I know I will be surrounded by great health care providers all doing what is best for the athlete… someone will be on my table and I will do my part…